JITC Digest October 2017


Inside this Issue:

Letter from the Editor

pedro-romero_1__1_.jpgDear JITC Readers:

All of us at the Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer (JITC) are looking forward to the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer’s (SITC) 32nd Annual Meeting & Pre-Conference Programs, which will take place from Nov. 8-12th in National Harbor, MD. The SITC Annual Meeting is the premier conference on cancer immunotherapy, providing excellent opportunities for scientific exchange, education, and networking. During the meeting, JITC’s editors, reviewers, and authors will be recognized for their service and contributions to the journal. We invite attendees to join us at the SITC Membership Business Meeting and Presidential Reception at 8 p.m. ET on Nov. 10th and meet many of the individuals whose work ensures that JITC is at the forefront of cancer immunotherapy publishing.  JITC representatives will also be available at booth #700 during exhibit hours on Nov. 10-11th to provide authorship advice and discuss potential submission opportunities.

Many presentations at the SITC Annual Meeting will include novel research analyzing potential cancer immunotherapy biomarkers within a variety of contexts. In this spirit, I would like to highlight a recently published JITC article by Ghayathri Jeyakumar et al. entitled “Neutrophil lymphocyte ratio as a prognostic and potentially predictive biomarker of clinical outcomes with immune checkpoint inhibitor therapy in renal cell carcinoma.” Researchers retrospectively analyzed data from 42 patients with advanced metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC) to determine whether a relationship exists between neutrophil lymphocyte ratio (NLR), duration of prior anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) therapy, and response to immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICI). According to their results, patients with mRCC whose pre-treatment NLR was <3, and duration of prior anti-VEGF therapy <6 months, had longer progression-free survival and overall survival after receiving ICI therapy. This small study provides important foundational analyses for utilizing NLR and duration of anti-VEGF therapy as predictive biomarkers for successful ICI therapy in patients with advanced mRCC.

With best regards,
Pedro J. Romero, MD
Editor-in-Chief, Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer

Research Article

Melanoma brain metastases treated with stereotactic radiosurgery and concurrent pembrolizumab display marked regression; efficacy and safety of combined treatment

Erik S. Anderson, Michael A. Postow, Jedd D. Wolchok, Robert J. Young, Åse Ballangrud, Timothy A. Chan, Yoshiya Yamada and Kathryn Beal
Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer 2017, 5:76 (17 October 2017)

From the Authors

"This study of concurrent stereotactic radiosurgery and pembrolizumab is important as it demonstrates not only the safety of this combination, but also the rapid response in comparison to SRS alone or SRS in combination with other checkpoint inhibitors or chemotherapy. It highlights the immunogenic effects of high dose radiation and potential synergy of combined immunotherapeutic treatments (radiation and a checkpoint inhibitor)."

Kathryn Beal, MD — Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center

Objective measurement and clinical significance of IDO1 protein in hormone receptor-positive breast cancer

Daniel E. Carvajal-Hausdorf, Nikita Mani, Vamsidhar Velcheti, Kurt A. Schalper and David L. Rimm
Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer 2017, 5:81 (17 October 2017)

From the Authors

"IDO1 is detected in the majority of hormone receptor-positive breast carcinomas, and is associated with decreased 20-year disease-specific survival. Objective measurement of IDO1 has the potential to identify patients that might benefit from anti-IDO blockade."

Daniel Eduardo Carvajal-Haudorf, MD — Yale University School of Medicine

Neutrophil lymphocyte ratio and duration of prior anti-angiogenic therapy as biomarkers in metastatic RCC receiving immune checkpoint inhibitor therapy

Ghayathri Jeyakumar, Seongho Kim, Naresh Bumma, Craig Landry, Cynthia Silski, Stacey Suisham, Brenda Dickow, Elisabeth Heath, Joseph Fontana and Ulka Vaishampayan
Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer 2017, 5:82 (17 October 2017)

From the Authors

"Neutrophil lymphocyte ratio proves to be a useful tool in predicting clinical outcomes with immune therapy in advanced renal cancer. Response to prior anti-vascular therapy also emerges as a predictor of outcomes with immune therapy in Kidney cancer."

Ulka Vaishampayan, MD — Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute


The immune system in cancer metastasis: friend or foe?

Louise M.E. Janssen, Emma E. Ramsay, Craig D. Logsdon and Willem W. Overwijk
Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer 2017, 5:79 (17 October 2017)

From the Authors

"The immune system can have a profound impact on cancer metastasis by either promoting or inhibiting distinct steps in the chain of metastatic progression. Here, Janssen et al. review the key cells and molecules that impact metastasis at each of these steps, and point to opportunities for therapeutic intervention."

Willem W. Overwijk, PhD — University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

Immuno-thermal ablations – boosting the anticancer immune response

Ryan Slovak, Johannes M. Ludwig, Scott N. Gettinger, Roy S. Herbst and Hyun S. Kim
Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer 2017, 5:78 (17 October 2017)

From the Authors

"Combination immunotherapies hold the promise of enhancing therapeutic efficacy and expanding response rates for the treatment of cancer. We report the published evidence of immunomodulation with thermal ablative therapies for inducing and bolstering anti-cancer immune response."

Hyun S. Kim, MD — Yale University School of Medicine

September Highly Accessed Articles


Durable response rate as an endpoint in cancer immunotherapy: insights from oncolytic virus clinical trials

Howard L. Kaufman, Robert H. I. Andtbacka, Frances A. Collichio, Michael Wolf, Zhongyun Zhao, Mark Shilkrut, Igor Puzanov and Merrick Ross
Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer 2017, 5:72 (19 September 2017)


Checkpoint inhibitor is active against large cell neuroendocrine carcinoma with high tumor mutation burden

Victoria E. Wang, Anatoly Urisman, Lee Albacker, Siraj Ali, Vincent Miller, Rahul Aggarwal and David Jablons
Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer 2017, 5:75 (19 September 2017)